Milo Yiannopoulos talks on campus, targets feminism, rape culture and Muslims

Brandon Clements, State Chair and Chapter President of YAL, interviews Milo Yiannopoulos in Columbia 150 on May 10. (Chris Trotchie/Emerald)

A previous version of this post stated that 32 percent of British Muslims said that wives should always obey their husbands, according to a poll that Yiannopoulos referred to in his talk. The figure is actually 39 percent. The Emerald regrets this error.

Milo Yiannopoulos, the British journalist and activist, shared his controversial views to a packed room Tuesday night.

The self-proclaimed “most fabulous super-villain on the internet” didn’t pull any punches as he tackled feminism, gun control, immigration, and his privilege grant. The night was organized into two sections, an interview and a Q&A from the audience.

Brandon Clements, State Chair and Chapter President of Young Americans for Liberty, led the interview. Questions about “third-wave” feminism opened the event, and Yiannopoluos quickly defended the historical movement that empowered women, giving them access to education and the right to vote.

He quickly changed tack however, saying, “Feminism seems to be fighting the battles of yesterday.”

“The only bit of feminism left is that which is more interested in hurting men than empowering women,” Yiannopoulos said.

Supporters made up most of the crowd, and Yiannopoulos skated over questions about the second amendment without much push-back. The crowd was subdued as the topic of immigration was broached. Even a room full of supporters hesitated to embrace the harshest words Yiannopulous had.

“I don’t want any Muslims in the country,” he said.

Yiannopoulos said that 52 percent of Muslims in Britain believe that homosexual sex should be outlawed, and 39 percent of Muslims believe that wives should always obey their husbands. As a gay man, he felt that his identity was under attack.

Yiannopoulos delved into other controversial topics, making statements like, “Cultural appropriation is a lie,” “Gun free zones are like putting a target on people’s backs,” and “These are some of the reasons that men make more than women in some jobs: They work harder.”

The second half of the event was conducted by the audience, as they quickly lined up for the chance to ask questions of their own.

The biggest challenger came in the form of a self identified atheist, cyclist, and male feminist–checking three of the top four boxes on Yiannopoulos’ list of “worst individuals”–who contended that the views of the controversial Breitbart editor are dangerous. Keying in on Yiannopoulous’ denial of a rape culture on college campuses, the audience member argued that a dismissal of any kind in response to rape is just as dangerous as the echo chamber Yiannopoulous is arguing against.

While Yiannopulous refused to be labeled as a comedian or a troll, he defended his over-the-top style, saying, “The only response to outrage culture is to be outrageous.”

Yiannopulous is continuing his tour in DePaul University in Chicago on May 24.


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